The Our Catchments, Our Communities (OCOC) Leadership Development Grants have been a great success. The first round of grants in 2017 are now complete, and the 2018 initiatives are well underway. The grants are building leadership capacity and providing opportunities for professional development for aspiring future leaders in catchment management.

2018 OCOC Leadership Grant recipients pose with Deputy Secretary Helen VaughanDELWP Deputy Secretary Water and Catchments, Helen Vaughan (middle) congratulates the 2018 grant recipients: (L-R) Kelly Nichols, Leonie Duncan, Bradley Costin and Kaleana Reyland.

The three grant categories are:

  • Aboriginal Leadership - recognising and supporting Traditional Owners and Aboriginal Victorians as leaders
  • Women in Leadership - improving diversity and inclusion and the opportunity for women to lead
  • Innovation - new approaches and knowledge to address contemporary issues in integrated catchment management

Key achievements to date

Eight people have received Our Catchments, Our Communities Leadership Development Grants. Click their names to discover their OCOC stories.

Year of grantGrant categoryGrant recipient


Aboriginal Leadership

  • Marilyne Nicholls - Dja Dja Wurrung Enterprises
    Training in wetland ecology and management and cultural mentorship from Traditional Owners
  • Bill Nicholson - Wurundjeri Tribe Land and Compensation Cultural Heritage Council Incorporated
    Building cultural knowledge on fire management to support fire, ecology and catchment management issues

Women in Leadership

  • Sarah Halligan - Port Phillip and Westernport Catchment Management Authority
    Building skills to assist the development of the Women in Agriculture leadership group


  • Jaclyne Scally - RMCG
    Study tour on innovative management approaches in estuarine environments to achieve positive environment and private land outcomes


Aboriginal Leadership

  • Kaleana Reyland - Murray Lower Darling Rivers Indigenous Nations
    To understand water policy and ecology and take part in training to increase her capability to support Traditional Owners to advocate for their water rights

Women in Leadership

  • Kellie Nichols - Bass Coast Landcare Network
    Supporting women in Landcare to become community leaders


  • Bradley Costin - Agriculture Victoria
    Improve catchment health opportunities through innovative water conservation farming practices
  • Leonie Duncan - Alluvium Consulting
    Applying innovative behaviour change methods to enhance landholder engagement

Further information: OCOC Leadership Development Grants recipients.

Minister for Water, Lisa Neville, and Chair of the Victorian Catchment Management Council, Angus Hume congratulate the 2017 grant recipients

2017 Recipient

“The practical observations and insights to management approaches received through this experience would be difficult to replicate through other training avenues. I’ve gained so much out of this grant! It’s been an excellent experience.”

– Jaclyne Scally

left: Minister for Water, Lisa Neville (far right) and Chair of the Victorian Catchment Management Council, Angus Hume (far left) congratulate the 2017 grant recipients: (L-R) Tarlina Gardiner accepting on behalf of Bill Nicholson, Marilyne Nicholls, Sarah Halligan and Jaclyne Scally.

Page last updated: 03/07/19